Sen. Snowe: GOP is ‘the party of Big Business and Big Oil and the rich.’

In a new Time article on the state of the Republican Party, Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME) lamented the GOP’s exclusion of groups like minorities and environmentalists. “Ideological purity is not the ticket to the promised land,” she said, echoing comments her fellow Maine senator Susan Collins (R) made last week. She also complained that, “to the average American,” the GOP is just the party of “Big Oil and the rich“:

Snowe recalls that when she proposed fiscally conservative “triggers” to limit Bush’s tax cuts in case of deficits, she was attacked by fellow Republicans. “I don’t know when willy-nilly tax cuts became the essence of who we are,” she says. “To the average American who’s struggling, we’re in some other stratosphere. We’re the party of Big Business and Big Oil and the rich.”

Of course, Americans are right to view the GOP as the party of Big Oil, which gave nearly $20 million to the Republican party apparatus during the last election cycle. The securities and investments industry — big banks — donated more than $54 million to the GOP.